Discovering and Forging Leaders Through Holy Land TravelChristian Journeys
As a church leader, providing a Holy Land experience is one of the greatest gifts you can give to those you lead on the path of their spiritual journey.
A chance to visit the land of Christ can make the stories and principles read for a lifetime more real, tangible and relatable. It is far more than just a vacation or travel experience – a Holy Land pilgrimage through Christian Journeys is an opportunity that can provide countless benefits to your church body, and change the lives of those who travel with you and their families.
You may be asking yourself what these benefits are, and what changes a pilgrimage to Israel will cause within your congregation. After all, a Holy Land journey requires a significant commitment from you and every church member going, from setting aside travel time to fundraising and beyond.
Below are a few of the incredible changes we’ve noticed in the dozens of churches and thousands of individuals we’ve helped guide through their Holy Land journey. These are benefits Christian Journeys has seen for both the leaders individually, and for their congregations as a whole.
1. A Hands-On Understanding of Christian Spiritual Heritage Is Powerful
One of the pastors we spoke with told us of his experience with what some view as an alternative to a physical journey to the Holy Land – a virtual travel experience. He told us that his church members simply didn’t seem to connect with the experience, and it was deemed a failure. There is an undeniable difference between seeing land of Jesus on screen and in pictures, and walking in the footsteps of Jesus yourself.
A journey to Jerusalem and other Holy Land sites should be a vital part of any Christian’s spiritual journey. Why? Because these lands are literally the key to our spiritual heritage, and the birthplace of Christianity. Israel is the only place on Earth that our God walked in a physical body. It is where he grew up, where he spread his word. At Christian Journeys, we believe that experiencing those places in person can’t be anything but life-changing for every true believer.
2. Church Leaders Will Learn New, More Effective Ways to Teach
You and your leadership team do your best to teach and advise your congregation. You spend hours, sometimes weeks, creating new sermons, sermon series and programs that will encourage your congregants in their daily lives and help them grow spiritually. When you travel to Israel, your experience will provide a new vitality and understanding as the words on the pages of the Bible literally come alive before your eyes. Seeing the places where Jesus stood, you will be changed – and can use God’s power to share that experience with them through your teaching.
3. Create Strong Bonds and New Relationships Between Leaders and Congregants
If you’ve ever travelled with someone, you know that the combination of day to day closeness and shared experience forges strong bonds. As you share experiences with your leadership team and members of your congregation with a Christian Journeys pilgrimage, you will build upon existing bonds and form new ones that can strengthen your church and, indirectly, its ability to reach the outside world.
4. Start A Spiritual Renewal Among Your Church Community
It is easy for even the most committed followers of Christ to sometimes feel as if they’re spiritual walk has grown stagnant. It’s challenging to keep your fire for God burning strongly through the days and years of everyday life. Nearly every traveler that Christian Journeys has guided through the Holy Lands has said the same thing – that experiencing the land of God for themselves has changed their spiritual journey and changed them forever. Pastors and church members can read the Bible in a new and incredible way, as they have seen the places in which many Bible stories occur. The messages of the Bible become even more real and relevant to them, re-igniting their desire to connect with God.
5. Strengthen Your Current Leaders – and Forge New Ones
This spiritual renewal is something that church leaders experience, sometimes even more strongly than those they lead, as they have spent years immersing themselves daily in the Word of God. Sometimes, as they say, it becomes hard to see the forest for the trees – and a pilgrimage to Israel is a wonderful way to experience the reality and truths of Christianity, rather than just the words that describe them. Sometimes, church members who have not been ready to take on leadership roles or have lead in a limited capacity, find that their new fire for serving Christ causes them to change the way they view their role in the church. New leaders are often forged on the trips, as newly-minted pilgrims feel a desire and responsibility to spread the truths that are burning brightly from their experience.
These are just a few of the many benefits and positive experiences we’ve seen from travelers on our Holy Land pilgrimages. It is an experience that changes lives and hearts with every journey – which is why we’re so proud to be a leader in planning and guiding churches along the way.
For more information on our upcoming journeys to Israel and other Holy Land destinations, please contact Christian Journey’s.